ADVERTISING
 
Monday, November 11   Sign in or Register
 
Evangelical Focus
 

 
 
 
FOLLOW US ON
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud
 

Newsletter
Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.
 
 

POLL
Society
Should Christians join social protests?



SEE MORE POLLS
 

 
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED



René Breuel
 

The power of a click

There seem to be moments, every now and then, which grab us. An idea pops up in our mind, and it shines so bright and obvious that we wonder why we had never thought it before.

CULTURE MAKING AUTHOR René Breuel 29 DECEMBER 2018 16:00 h GMT+1
Photo: Julia Caesar, Unsplash (CC)

There seem to be moments, every now and then, which grab us. An idea pops up in our mind, and it shines so bright and obvious that we wonder why we had never thought it before.



Suddenly the way we understand the world changes, like Archimedes, who sitting in a water tub suddenly realized that one could move the world with a fixed, absolute point. “Eureka!”, he screamed: a new idea grabs hold of us with its explanatory power.



Or when a pair of eyes matches another, and there is an inexplicable connection, and a flush of feeling awakes us to the beauty of another person.



Or when we see a need of the world, like hunger or coward violence, and a holy anger grows on us, and we can’t understand how other people can look at this need and look away, and sleep peacefully, and we wake up to a cause.



These are moments which grab us, which resonate profoundly with who we are. Some people we meet like we meet thousand others, but every now and then it is different – “now that’s a great guy”, we think – and a friendship is born.



These moments of connection mark us, communicate with our sense of self, and we center our lives around them. We come back to the same bondings – ideas, people, causes, places – and search for others with existential hunger, looking for these moments of intense connection across  the vast horizon of sameness.



What causes these moments of “click”? Why do we have them with some people, ideas and places and not with others? And, for those of us who try to communicate things, lead groups and influence people, how can we extend them to others?



Maybe a concrete example can help here. Consider this description of a moment of “click” – an intense moment of prayer Jonathan Edwards had in the eighteenth-century:



“The appearance of every thing was altered; there seemed to be, as it were, a calm, sweet cast, or appearance of divine glory, in almost every thing. God’s excellency, his wisdom, his purity and love, seemed to appear in every thing; in the sun, and moon, and stars; in the clouds and blue sky; in the grass, flowers, trees; in the water, and all nature, which used to greatly to fix my mind. I often used to sit and view the moon for continuance; and in the day spent much time in viewing the clouds and sky, to behold the sweet glory of God in these things; in the mean time, singing forth, with a low voice, my contemplations of the Creator and Redeemer.”[1]


It is a curious, compelling description. He talks about contemplating the moon, clouds, trees, but seeing more in them: “a calm, sweet cast, or appearance of divine glory, in almost every thing”.



It is a very personal moment, so personal that we resonate with it, I think, insofar as we have had this particular moment of click ourselves or not: if we have had spiritually intense moments or not.



If we never felt anything like Edwards’ illuminated walk through the forest, we ask, “What is all the fuss about? It’s just trees and the sky”.



If, on the other hand, we have felt such a sweetness and sense of serenity when in prayer before, Edwards’ divine “click” is eloquent with meaning.



A moment of click involves interiority, serenity, wakefulness. It is like a portal that floods our inner world with external beauty, that makes us feel alive.



And when it comes to Edwards’ example, when it comes to faith,  it makes what before was an abstract idea – God – shine with personal splendour and truthfulness, shine brighter than the surface of the water or more colorful than the grass below.



But what gives us such a moment of click? What makes us see this kind of meaning and beauty?



That is a question worth asking, a personal and intimate question. It is a question that can throw the start of a new week  – maybe the very week that starts today – into a whole new focus.



[1 Jonathan Edwards, Personal Narrative, quoted in Michael J. McClymond, Encounters with God: An Approach to the Theology of Jonathan Edwards (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998), 25.


 

 


0
COMMENTS

    If you want to comment, or

 



 
 
YOUR ARE AT: - - - The power of a click
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
 
AUDIOS Audios
 
Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels

An interview with the socio-political representative of the European Evangelical Alliance about how evangelical Christians work at the heart of the European Union.

 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church

An interview with Lars Dahle, of the Steering Committee of the Lausanne Movement Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity held in Rome.

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
IFES World Assembly: ‘Messengers of Hope’ IFES World Assembly: ‘Messengers of Hope’

Students, graduates and staff of the global evangelical student movement reflected together on how the books of Luke and Acts apply to today's universities.

 
Christians at work - the missing link in fulfilling the Great Commission Christians at work - the missing link in fulfilling the Great Commission

Photos of the Lausanne Movement Global Workplace Forum, celebrated in Manila.

 
European Freedom Network Bridge 2019 conference European Freedom Network Bridge 2019 conference

Images of the fifth EFN gathering. Experts, activists, counsellors and church leaders met in Pescara, Italy.

 
VIDEO Video
 
Algerian Christians worship God as police arrives to close church Algerian Christians worship God as police arrives to close church

Video of the moment police officers enter a Protestant evangelical church near Tizi-Ouzou to close it. Church members do not stop singing, and peacefully resist later.

 
Porn exploits victims of human trafficking Porn exploits victims of human trafficking

The European Freedom Network launches a new anti-trafficking campaign: “You have no way of knowing if the porn you are looking at is from someone who chose to be there or not”.

 

 

 
What makes humans different to artificial intelligence machines? What makes humans different to artificial intelligence machines?

David Glass, Senior Lecturer in Computer Science at Ulster University (Northern Ireland) analyses whether a computer can have emotions or a conscious experience.

 
A tent of hope for Venezuelan refugees A tent of hope for Venezuelan refugees

Thousands still cross the border to Colombia every week, and many continue on foot into the interior. Christian young people have set up an aid station along the road.

 
 
Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube
 
 
WE RECOMMEND
 
PARTNERS
 

 
AEE
EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.
 

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.